Seminar 2: The People of New York

Instructor: Edward (Ted) Widmer
Thursdays, 10:00 AM – 12:40 PM
Macaulay Honors College, Online
Course Code: MHC 220

This course, like all Seminar 2 courses, will study the history and continuing impact of immigration upon New York City. Students will study every phase of this rich history, from the arrival of Dutch and English in the 17th century (including their impact on indigenous peoples), to the very recent past and present. We will also pay close attention to the geographical and environmental factors that have shaped the city, looking at where different groups of people have congregated. We will use conventional sources (books, articles, websites), but students will also be encouraged to find their own information, through oral history and other means of gathering information. We will pay close attention to how historical data can be presented online and in a museum setting, thanks to an exhibit, “Who We Are,” scheduled to open at the Museum of the City of New York in late November, and run throughout the spring semester. We will scrutinize an ongoing attempt to count New York City’s population — the 2020 census, happening in real time.